Dogs and cats are common in our everyday lives. Since a large population can be seen in the streets, they frequently cross paths. With that, people cannot avoid relating the two of them. For example, some television cartoons depict cats and dogs as their archnemesis, and some, especially kids, view them as lovers.
Relating to that dilemma, in this article, we will address the answer to the famous question of whether can dogs get cats pregnant or can a cat get pregnant by a dog.
Can a Dog Impregnate a Cat?
Throughout the years, there have been several speculations and theories about dogs impregnating a cat or vice versa. However, due to their huge biological differences, dogs can never impregnate a cat. With this, a dog’s sperm can never fertilize a cat’s egg.
Even though some breeders attempt to produce a half dog-half cat breed by raising both animals with the same lifestyle and cohabitation, like feeding them the same food and adapting each other’s behavior like barking and meowing sounds, it is still not possible for a dog to impregnate a cat.
According to the article by Wright (2015), cats and dogs are genetically distinct. Therefore, producing a cat-dog hybrid is highly impossible. With this, it completely debunks previous claims about breeders successfully producing “Kuppies” (kittens and puppies) – a slang term for crossbreed dog and cat offspring.
Other examples of impossible hybrids because of genetic gaps are cats and rabbits (cabbits), squirrels and cats (squittens), and even guinea pigs and cats (guinea cats). Continue reading this article as we later discuss the biological differences between cats and dogs.
Can Dogs and Cats Mate?
No, dogs and cats can’t mate. Even though there are certain situations where people think that mating dogs and cats – is not usually the case. For example, according to the study by Menchetti et al. (2020), more dogs lick cats and play with each other – but it is more on mutual interactions and a result of peaceful cohabitation.
Moreover, since dogs and cats are entirely different species, they also have mating signals and behaviors, which are not recognizable or understood by other species. In addition, the reproductive organs of both animals are not compatible with each other.
Cats have barbed or hooked penises – this feature allows them to stick to the female cat during their mating period. Meanwhile, if male cats try to mate with female dogs, it can result in various infections and injuries since female dogs cannot accommodate the male cat’s reproductive organ.
Why Is a Dog Mounting a Cat?
One of the root causes of the confusion about whether dogs and cats mate is: the dog’s mounting behavior. People often confuse it with mating. Dog mounting is not exclusive to mating.
According to the article by Gardiner (2019), the causes of improper mounting among dogs can be divided into three categories: Hormonal, Behavioral, and Other Health Concerns. For the hormonal factor, non-spayed or neutered dogs might exhibit inappropriate mounting.
Meanwhile, dogs might mount other animals or people for the behavioral category. It is because of their playful nature, over-excitement, and obsessive behavior (rare). There are also cases where dogs mount as a form of masturbation and to assert dominance. In addition, mounting can be caused by health concerns like UTI or Urinary Tract Infection, skin allergies (flea infestation), and paraphimosis.
Additionally, dogs can still get an erection while mounting cats, even though it is only a form of playing. Thus, this behavior adds to the confusion if both animals are mating or having a sexual play.
Since mounting is normal animal behavior, pet owners shouldn’t be concerned if they see their dogs exhibiting this behavior. However, if you notice that it is getting out of hand or you think that there are some underlying health issues, it is recommended to consult with your veterinarian.
Plus, to treat inappropriate mounting behavior, don’t exhibit any positive remarks or attitudes, like joking and laughing, every time your dog is mounting, not to make them think it is a good thing. Harsh punishments to correct the behavior is also not advisable – this method will do more harm than good. It can also cause other problems like anxiety, stress, and more.
Can a Cat Give Birth to a Dog?
Cats can’t give birth to a dog since it is impossible for a dog to impregnate a cat. The confusion about cats giving birth to puppies is not new. There have been several cases where people reported that their cats “gave birth” to puppies. These claims are debunked.
Based on the news article by Vera (2006), a woman from Passo Fundo in southern Brazil claimed that her cat gave birth to three puppies. A geneticist and director of the Institute of Biological Sciences of the University of Passo Fundo named Adil Pacheco took blood samples from the three puppies to determine whether the claim was true. And in the end, the DNA results stated that the three puppies were 100% canine.
Pacheco added that it is common for mothering mammals like cats to nurse other young species. Thus, the cat who allegedly gave birth to the puppies most likely inherited them from a nearby female dog who had just given birth.
Biological Differences Between Cats and Dogs
Cats and dogs have a huge difference in their number of chromosomes. The most prominent function of these chromosomes is “to carry the basic genetic material or DNA” of an organism. In the case of cats and dogs, cats have 38 chromosomes (19 pairs), while the latter has 78 chromosomes (39 pairs). With that, it is evident how distinct their DNAs are.
Moreover, cats’ and dogs’ reproductive organs are not compatible with each other. As mentioned previously, forcing them to mate might result in injuries and infections. In addition, dogs are only sexually attracted to other dogs, and cats are only sexually attracted to other cats.
Another difference between cats and dogs is their pack behavior. Over the years, dogs commonly worked in groups, while cats, like other felines, are mostly solitary. Furthermore, they all have different eating preferences.
Despite all this, cats and dogs are mammals fed milk by their mothers during their early life stages. Cats and dogs have natural mother instincts; thus, they will not hesitate to cater to or nurse other species’ younglings.
Is There a Possibility Of a Cat and Dog Hybrid?
As mentioned previously, because cats and dogs are genetically distinct, there is zero possibility of dog and cat mating successfully, creating a cat-dog hybrid. But, despite this, there are still people who tried their luck.
One of the people who tried cross-breeding cats and dogs was Roy Tutt (Wright, 2015). In December 1970, Tutt released an advertisement saying he accepted offers for a “half cat-half dog” hybrid. According to his statement, the hybrid cat-dog has a dog’s head and a cat’s whiskers, furs, and legs.
In addition, Tutt also shared that he’s been trying to mate cats and dogs for ten years, and he even made measures like feeding them a combination of cat and dog food – thinking that it might help in successful cross-breeding.
Moreover, Roy Tutt also made them co-live to adapt to each other’s specific behavior, like meowing and barking. However, further investigation showed that the “half cat-half dog” hybrids are pure canines. Even before, scientists and experts attempted to create a cat-dog hybrid. But because of their biological differences, creating one is 100% impossible.
Can Dogs Mate With Other Animals?
Although dogs can’t mate with cats, they can mate with other animals. Dogs can mate with a wolf. For example, their offspring can also mate and produce offspring. Moreover, dogs can also breed with coyotes, producing a coydog. But their offspring would be infertile, meaning they cannot reproduce.
However, this mating will not happen in a natural setting. Usually, coyotes are raised in captivity and then bred with a dog.
The answer to whether a dog can get a cat pregnant and vice versa is a resounding no. Cats and dogs producing offspring are impossible due to their huge biological differences. There might be situations where you witness a dog mounting a cat. But that behavior does not necessarily equate to mating.